ASH Daily News for 5 September 2019


  • Smoking ban has transformed ‘grimy’ boozers, says pub guide
  • UK to suspend tobacco Track and Trace system in no-deal Brexit


  • Michigan bans flavoured e-cigarettes


Smoking ban has transformed ‘grimy’ boozers, says pub guide

It was predicted to be the death knell for the traditional British boozer and likely to lead to a slump in business and permanent closures. But 12 years since the introduction of the smoking ban in England, a pub guide has credited the initiative with transforming pubs and forcing them to become cleaner, brighter places with better food and with greater appeal to women and families.

The 37th edition of the Good Pub Guide, published on Thursday (5 September), features more than 5,000 pubs on the basis of visitors’ recommendations, backed up by editor visits and inspections. In addition to official reviews, there are online listings for another 40,000 pubs across the UK.

“Those bars full of fug and male chat quickly became a thing of the past,” the guide notes. “Pubs adapted by installing smokers’ shelters and outdoor heaters, and licensees soon realised that by making their pubs smoke-free, they turned into cleaner, brighter places, and opened up a massive new customer base: women and families with young children who headed to pubs for a meal and even an overnight stay.”

Source: The Guardian, 5 September 2019

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UK to suspend tobacco Track and Trace system in no-deal Brexit

The UK’s newly-implemented Track and Trace system for tobacco products will be suspended in the event of a no-deal Brexit, HMRC confirmed on Wednesday (4 September).

The system, which was a requirement of the EU Tobacco Products Directive, would likely be suspended for up to one year if the UK leaves the EU without a deal on 31 October, while it attempted to introduce a UK stand-alone system, an HMRC spokesman told Convenience Store.

The Track and Trace legislation was enforced on 20 May 2019, requiring retailers across the UK to apply for unique codes – an Economic Operator Identifier Code registered to their business and a Facility Identifier Code for each of their stores – in order to purchase new Track and Trace compliant tobacco products, which are now available in wholesale.

“If we have to suspend the Track and Trace system following a no-deal EU exit, we are fully committed to restarting a UK system as quickly as possible with the minimum changes necessary to give the UK full regulatory control,” the HMRC spokesman said.

“If we leave the EU with a deal, the Track and Trace system will continue in its current format,” he added.

The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) is seeking assurances from HMRC that retailers will not have to go through the application process again, in the event of a no deal.

Source: Convenience Store, 4 September 2019

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Michigan bans flavoured e-cigarettes

Michigan is to become the first US state to ban flavoured e-cigarettes. E-cigarette companies in the US are facing increasing regulatory scrutiny over youth use and the health effects of vaping. Advertised as products to help people give up tobacco, there are concerns about their popularity with teenagers.

Last month the Federal Trade Commission said that it would investigate how Juul, which dominates the US market, had used social media “influencers” to promote its e-cigarettes. Juul denies targeting young people and says that its e-cigarettes are intended to help people give up smoking.

Source: The Times, 5 September 2019

Editorial note: In the UK, where advertising and product standards for e-cigarettes are regulated in line with the EU Tobacco Products Directive, only 1.6% of 11-18 year olds report using e-cigarettes more than once a week. Vaping is much less common among young people who have never smoked.

See also:
ASH Fact sheet: Use of e-cigarettes among young people in Great Britain. 2019.

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